The Minnesota Twins (43-43) host the Kansas City Royals (25-60) at Target Field on Tuesday. The Twins took Monday’s series opener 8-4, their seventh head-to-head victory in eight games this season. Reliever Brent Headrick threw one inning to get the win.
Carlos Correa went 4 for 5 with a double, one run, and one RBI in the win. Edouard Julien added a solo home run. Maikel Garcia was 2 for 3 with a solo home run for the Royals.
ON THE MOUND
Zack Greinke (1-8, 5.15 ERA) is slated to get the start for Kansas City. The righty allowed two runs over six innings in his last start, a 4-3 road win over the Guardians on Thursday. He gave up 11 hits and walked two in the no-decision.
Over two previous starts against the Twins this season, Greinke has allowed nine earned runs over nine innings (0-2, 9.00). He has struck out seven and walked three. For Minnesota, right-hander Kenta Maeda (1-5, 6.23 ERA) will toe the rubber.
It’s his first appearance of the season against the Royals. In his last start on Wednesday, Maeda took the loss on the road against the Braves. He threw five innings and gave up two runs on five hits, striking out four and walking two in the 3-0 defeat.
AT THE PLATE
Over the last five games, Kansas City has averaged 5.2 runs a game, up from their season average of 3.8, thanks in part to improved on-base performance (.328 vs .298). Against righties like Maeda this season, the Royals have a .661 OPS, the third lowest in the league.
Salvador Perez is the team’s most potent producer against right-handers with a .817 OPS in 213 at-bats. Minnesota is averaging only 3.6 runs per game in the last five, down slightly from 4.2 for the season.
The Twins have a .724 OPS against right-handers in 2023. With a .774 OPS over 178 at-bats, Byron Buxton has been their best hitter against right-handers.
HOME AND AWAY
Kansas City is 12-29 away from Ewing M. Kauffman Stadium in 2023, scoring 3.4 runs per game while allowing 5.1 runs. Minnesota has won three in a row at their home ballpark.
The Twins are 24-19 at home this season, averaging 4.5 runs per game while surrendering 4.1. In the last 10 games between the AL Central rivals at Target Field, Minnesota is 9-1 with an average scoreline of 5.9-2.3.
The Twins lead the AL Central by one game over the Guardians. The Royals are fifth in the AL Central, 17 games behind the Twins.
SportsTips’ MLB Pick:
Minnesota Twins (-200)
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*Odds correct at time of publication, courtesy of BetMGM.